9 items from 2011
Matthias Schoenaerts, Bullhead AFI Fest 2011, currently being held in Los Angeles, has announced the winners of its audience and jury awards. The Breakthrough section Audience Award winner was Alexandra-Therese Keining's Swedish romantic drama With Every Heartbeat, starring Ruth Vega Fernandez and Liv Mjönes as two women who meet and fall in love at a family wedding. Michaël R. Roskam's Belgian [not Dutch, as previously stated in this post] crime drama Bullhead, that country's Best Foreign Language Film Oscar entry, was the winner in the New Auteurs section. The film's star, Matthias Schoenaerts, was given the Acting Award for his portrayal of a Limburg cattle farmer enmeshed in shady activities. In the Young Americans section, the winner was Clay Liford's comedy Wuss, the story of a high-school teacher whose life takes a turn for the worse after he gets beaten up by his own pupils. David Gelb's Philip Glass-scored documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi, about sushi master Jiro Ono, »
- Andre Soares
The first of the senses that writer/director Julia Loktev hits us with over the opening black screen is sound. We heara rhythmic pounding/creaking/breathing that's hard to place (sex scene? construction work?). When the fade-up happens, you'd never guess what image is waiting for you. It's something both utterly mundane and alien and strange. This is only the first of the surprises that await you as you journey across the Georgian wilderness with Nica (Hani Furstenberg) and Alex (Gael García Bernal) in The Loneliest Planet.
Nica and Alex are madly in love both with each other and their mutual wanderlust. They're seeking an authentic travel experience beyond touristy paths before they marry. English is their common tongue (though neither of their native languages) and the film makes the very smart decision of subtitling nothing, as »
- NATHANIEL R
Let's start with New York's Logan Hill, who reminds us that "Brooklyn director Julia Loktev's Day Night Day Night was a taut, paranoiac Rorschach thriller about a mysterious woman with mysterious motivations who straps a suicide vest to her chest and takes the subway to Times Square. Her latest film is even more willfully abstruse but just as unsettling. Gael García Bernal and newcomer Hani Furstenberg play fiancées [Alex and Nica] on vacation in the harsh landscape of Georgia…. They're living the backpacker's dream, dancing in club's with strangers, grinning dumbly in response to foreign tongues. Then they meet up with a haggard tour guide of grizzled features and morbid humor (the magnetic and bizarre Bidzina Gujabidze), who takes them off into the mountains on an isolated hike."
"And then something shocking happens — it's not fair to say what this game-changing event is, but, then again, Loktev never makes it clear what it signifies, »
With The Loneliest Planet, the follow-up to her acclaimed feature Day Night Day Night, writer/director Julia Loktev builds a piercing drama around the contrast between a beautiful wide-open landscape and the ugliness of a momentary, possibly reflexive, moment of human behavior. In the film, an adventuring couple (Gael Garcia Bernal and Hani Furstenberg) trek through the Georgian mountains with a for-hire guide (Bidzina Gujabidze). A violent encounter changes everything. But in Loktev’s world, the hurt comes not from gunplay or kidnappings but from something more subtle. We asked Loktev about the relationship of landscape to story, about silence, and about the progression of her filmmaking.
Filmmaker: The Loneliest Planet deals with the dynamics within one couple’s relationship. Are these dynamics a product of the extreme situation they find themselves in, or are they fissures you think exist, perhaps unseen, within couples in everyday situations?
Loktev: The central »
- Scott Macaulay
#15. The Loneliest Planet Director: Julia Loktev Cast: Gael García Bernal, Hani Furstenberg, Bidzina Gujabidze Distributor: Rights Available Buzz: Perhaps this year's contempo version of Meek's Cutoff because of the navigation of male-female rapport in the tricky surroundings of the vast wilderness, if it weren't for Gael García Bernal signing up for the lead, perhaps Julia Loktev would still be trying to finance the film --- this says a lot about the quality of the project and perhaps the observational approach to the film with much of the minimalism we found in her debut effort - Day Night Day Night. Recently premiered in Locarno with a glowing review from both Variety and IndieWIRE, I'm decidedly hopeful about the prospects. The Gist: I'm looking forward to the portion of the film where Pandora's Box is flung right open -- this observes a young couple is backpacking in the Caucasus Mountains in Georgia »
The 49th New York Film Festival has announced their main slate which takes place September 30th thru October 16th at Lincoln Center. The closing night selection is Alexander Payne’s The Descendants which joins the gala screenings of opening night’s Roman Polanski’s Carnage, David Cronenberg’s A Dangerous Method, and the Almodóvar/Banderas reunion The Skin I Live In. Check out the lineup below along with a synopsis of each film:
Opening Night Gala Selection
Director: Roman Polanski
Centerpiece Gala Selection
Director: Simon Curtis
Special Gala Presentations
Director: David Cronenberg
The Skin I Live In
Director: Pedro Almodóvar
Closing Night Gala Selection
Director: Alexander Payne
Main Slate Selection
4:44: Last Day On Earth
Director: Abel Ferrara
Director: Michel Hazanavicius »
- Christopher Clemente
New York, August 17, 2011 -The Film Society of Lincoln Center announced today that Alexander Payne.s The Descendants will be the Closing Night Gala selection for the 49th New York Film Festival (September 30-October 16). Nyff.s main slate of 27 feature films was also announced as well as a return to the festival stage of audience favorite, On Cinema (previously titled The Cinema Inside Me), featuring an in-depth, illustrated conversation with Alexander Payne.
The 2011 edition of Nyff will also feature a unique blend of programming to complement the main-slate of films, including: the Masterworks programs, additional titles added to the previously announced Ben-hur, Nicholas Ray.s We Can.T Go Home Again and Velvet Bullets and Steel Kisses: Celebrating the Nikkatsu Centennial, as well as Views from the Avant-Garde, and several special event screenings, all of which will be announced in more detail shortly.
.In many of the films in this year.s Festival, »
- Michelle McCue
The New York Film Festival have officially announced their main slate, including the closing night film. The latter will be Alexander Payne‘s The Descendants starring George Clooney, which will also bow at Toronto. Their line-up includes a lot of Cannes holdovers including new films from the Dardenne brothers, Lars von Trier, Wim Wenders, Jafar Panahi and Mojtaba Mirtahmasb, Joseph Cedar, as well as buzzed-about hits like The Artist, Le Havre, Once Upon a Time in Antatolia and Miss Bala. Out of the new films, we’ll be getting Martin Scorsese‘s George Harrison doc, Steve McQueen‘s Hunger follow-up Shame, as well as Abel Ferrara and Béla Tarr and Agnes Hranitzky films. I was also glad to see Sean Durkin‘s utterly excellent Martha Marcy May Marlene as part of the slate. Check out the full line-up below.
4:44: Last Day On Earth
Abel Ferrara, 2011, USA, 82min
- firstname.lastname@example.org (thefilmstage.com)
#22. The Loneliest Planet Director/Writer: Julia LoktevProducers: Helge Albers, Marie-Therese Guirgis, Lars Knudsen and Jay Van HoyDistributor: Rights Available. The Gist: A chamber-piece set in a landscape that is both overwhelmingly open and frighteningly closed. A young couple is backpacking in the Caucasus Mountains in Georgia a year after tensions with Russia erupted in a brief war and settled into an uneasy peace. The couple hires a local guide to lead them on a several-day hiking trip, and the three set off into an alien, isolated wilderness. In a moment of fear, something happens, an involuntary gesture, a gesture that takes only two or three seconds, a gesture that's over almost as soon as it begins...(more) Cast: Gael García Bernal, Hani Furstenberg and Bidzina Gudjabidze List Worthy Reasons...: The entire packaging of Loktev's sophomore film is alluring. First you have this filmmaker not afraid to move into uncharted »
9 items from 2011
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